Event for the National Day for the Prevention of sea-related accidents & drownings

On the occasion of the National Day for the Prevention of sea-related accidents & drownings, the Ministry of Shipping and Island Policy organized today a special event to present the actions that were implemented during the last year in collaboration with Safe Water Sports, that aims to strengthen the fact of prevention and the reduction of human losses in the aquatic environment of our country.

During the event, the 1st Annual Report of the Observatory for water accidents in Greece was presented, prepared by Safe Water Sports in collaboration with the Coast Guard-Greek Coast Guard and the Greek Police.

The Obersvatory report has been operating since November 2019 through asoftware that was developed and provided by Safe Water Sports to the Ministry of Shipping and Island Policy. The report presents statistics on fatal accidents and injuries occurring at sea and internal waters (lakes, rivers, swimming pools) from 2017 - 2020. 

The Minister of Shipping and Island Policy, Mr. Giannis Plakiotakis, referred to important legislative initiatives implemented by the Ministry during the past few months such as:

The new Presidential Decree 71/2020, which concerns the operation of lifeguard schools and the lifeguard coverage at beaches and includes significant improvements in the field of strengthening their presence. Specifically, it concerns: 

  • Improvement of the quality of lifeguard studies.
  • A change in the way examinations are performed in order to increase the number of lifeguards who can graduate from schools each year so that there are no vacancies.
  • A change in the conditions that determine whether a beach must have lifeguard coverage.
  • An increase in the lifeguard coverage by 1 hour (10.00-18.00)

  • Strict fines on organizations that do not place lifeguards at beaches while it is required.

Through the supply of 155 mobile devices by the Ministry of Digital Policy, with which the Port Authorities of the whole country were equipped having a special software provided for free to the Coast Guard - Hellenic Coast Guard by Safe Water Sports, all the controls to lifeguards and to water sports centers have now become digital.

The newly established office "Digital Management - Control of Marine Activities & Maritime Safety" of the Port Police Directorate, prepared special digitally police control sheets related to the observance of laws and safety regulations by lifeguards and water sports and recreational companies. In 2020, this method was tested on a pilot basis and it is planned that during this sumner all controls will be done exclusively digitally in order to achieve more effective controls. 

The President of Safe Water Sports, Mr. Panagiotis Paschalakis, referred to another innovation that is introduced in collaboration with the Union of Lifeguard Schools (ESNE). It is about a special application for mobile phones, named LifeguardRescue, which was developed by Safe Water Sports with the support of Cosmote, and  records in real time all the rescues and cases of first aid provided by lifeguards. 

The event, that afollowed all the protection instructions against the spread of the coronavirus, was attended by the Minister of Shipping and Island Policy Mr. Giannis Plakiotakis, the Deputy Minister of Shipping and Island Policy Mr. Costas Katsafados, the Undersecretary of Civil Protection Mr. Eleftherios Oikonomou, the General Secretary of the Aegean and Island Policy Mr. Manolis Koutoulakis, the Commander of the Coast Guard - Hellenic Coast Guard Rear Admiral L.S. Theodoros Kliaris, the President of Safe Water Sports Mr. Panagiotis Paschalakis, the representative of KEDE and Mayor of Vari - Voula - Vouliagmeni, Mr. Grigoris Konstandellos, the President of the Association of Lifeguard Schools Mr. Marios Myronakis, the Ex. .ΑΚΤ., As well as Senior Officers of the Coast Guard - Hellenic Coast Guard.